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Household size and residential water demand: an empirical approach

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  • Arbues, Fernando
  • Villanu´a, Inmaculada
  • Barberán Ortí, Ramón

Abstract

The effectiveness of pricing policies depends on the price elasticity of consumption. It is well documented that residential demand for water is influenced by heterogeneity associated with differences in the size of the household and socioeconomic characteristics. In this paper, we focus on household size. Our initial hypothesis is that users’ sensitivity to changes in price is different depending on the number of household members. To this end, we carry out an empirical estimation of urban water demand in Zaragoza (Spain) distinguishing between households with different sizes using data at the individual level. As far as we are aware, this approach to urban residential water demand is new in the literature. The analysis suggests that all households are sensitive to prices regardless of size. A more relevant finding is that small households are more sensitive to price changes.

Suggested Citation

  • Arbues, Fernando & Villanu´a, Inmaculada & Barberán Ortí, Ramón, 2010. "Household size and residential water demand: an empirical approach," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 54(1), March.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aareaj:161996
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Joanne Parker & Robert Wilby, 2013. "Quantifying Household Water Demand: A Review of Theory and Practice in the UK," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 27(4), pages 981-1011, March.
    2. Havranek, Tomas & Irsova, Zuzana & Vlach, Tomas, 2016. "Publication Bias in Measuring the Income Elasticity of Water Demand," MPRA Paper 75247, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Alison Browne & Will Medd & Ben Anderson, 2013. "Developing Novel Approaches to Tracking Domestic Water Demand Under Uncertainty—A Reflection on the “Up Scaling” of Social Science Approaches in the United Kingdom," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 27(4), pages 1013-1035, March.
    4. Xiaojia Bao, 2016. "Water, Electricity and Weather Variability in Rural Northern China," WISE Working Papers 2014-07-02, Wang Yanan Institute for Studies in Economics (WISE), Xiamen University.
    5. repec:spr:waterr:v:32:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s11269-017-1818-z is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Tomas Havranek & Zuzana Irsova & Tomas Vlach, 2017. "Measuring the Income Elasticity of Water Demand: The Importance of Publication and Endogeneity Biases," Working Papers IES 2017/02, Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies, revised Feb 2017.

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